Proud Stories: Sharrod Williams (He/ Him/ His)
Q: What kind of performance artist are you?
Actor, Singer, Dancer, Writer, Producer - all of the above!
Q: When did you first know that you wanted to be a full-time artist?
College. I've been singing my whole life. After high school, I knew I didn't want to continue studying classical music. So I went to Montclair State University undeclared and for the first time in my life said, "I'll figure it out when I get there." I was finally able to fulfill a lifelong dream of taking my first dance class during freshman year and fell in love. I became a dance major and officially knew I wanted to be an artist. During my last year, I did a musical (for second time in my life, but the first time with singing AND dance training under my belt) and it was the last affirmation I needed. It changed my life and I knew, this was it.
Q: How are you keeping yourself inspired to create during this unprecedented time?
By just creating. Truly. There really has been no better time than now to dive into every bit of that curiosity about my other skills, develop that idea, or just keep moving. Why not, right!? I had a head start pre-pandemic with discovering my interest in screenwriting. It had been weighing on me for about a year and I took the chance when it came, to slow down, and start learning in the Fall of 2019. It led to about a year later successfully producing my own web series called NEIGHBORS! I am so proud of it. NEIGHBORS is the first brainchild of my multi-media brand, Cocoa Dusted Productions. I can't wait to keep telling stories by Queer folx and people of color.
Q: What is the biggest obstacle you’ve had to overcome as an artist and how did you overcome it?
I think about the beginning days. I was very afraid and not a fan of the idea that being an artist means being comfortable living in the unknown. As a natural born planner with an upbringing that fosters even more of a desire for stability, I struggled early on with knowing if I should even pursue performing. As an artist, you often times don't know when or where that next job is coming from. You're always hustling. You're always a student of life. But this feeling in my gut wouldn't let me turn my back on it. I had to find a way to find beauty in the anonymity. If I hadn't, I may not be where I am today as an artists and I can safely say, I'd regret it.
Q: What are you most proud of in your career thus far?
Everything. The good, the bad, and the ugly. I thrive in challenging myself to keep going. To keep leveling up. With every dream that comes true, a new dream forms—even bigger than the last. I am very proud of the brand I am building right now, all on my own. It feels tangible, it is real, and I can't wait to see what God has in store for 2021 and CDP (Cocoa Dusted Productions).
Q: Is there anything you are working on now that can be shared and supported?
NEIGHBORS! We recently released all of Season 1, and our after show series, "KeeKee Giggle" on YouTube. Really trying to spread the word and get people watching!
INFO: "A love note to friendship in the toughest of times..." NEIGHBORS is a gay web series that celebrates gay love, friendship, people of color, and the queer experience. NEIGHBORS follows recently unemployed actors and best friends Sharrod and Joey navigate Pandemic life, gay interracial relationships, and a secret that threatens their friendship for good.